Italy, Europe and global economy in the coming decades

26 November 2015


Italy, Europe, the world in 40 years. Prometeia celebrated its 40th anniversary projecting into the future, giving many insights about major economic, financial and technological trends dominating the next decades, and not disregarding the big geopolitical changes that are jeopardizing the fragile European recovery.


Paolo Onofri, Secretary General of Prometeia Associazione, opened the seminar recalling the over 40 years of research and forecasting. He then sketched the current economic context, between emerging markets and world trade slowdown and Europe’s difficulty in speaking with one voice.


Harvard Professor Jeffrey Frankel raised the big questions for the global economy in the 21st century: will globalization continue in the long run? Will the rapid growth of emerging markets continue, and which ones? Will Chinese slowdown – inevitable and crucial – be a soft or a hard landing, as it seems at the end of 2015?


In the following roundtable Alberto Giovannini, former Italian Prime Minister and Eu Commission President Romano Prodi and Carlo Bastasin from Brookings Institution discussed about Europe everlasting stalemate between asphyxiation and a new start , with a more and more evident lack of political unity.


The second part of the day was the dedicated to the challenges imposed by innovation in all its forms.

Jena University Professor Uwe Cantner underlined the window opportunities of this peculiar technological transition phase, suitable for lagging countries such as Italy. 


Poste Italiane ceo Francesco Caio and H-FARM founder Riccardo Donadon provided insights on growth and technology from the Italian businesses’ point of view. Interviewed by Prometeia Chairman Angelo Tantazzi, they agreed the big challenge now is to channel the huge savings of the Italian households towards the new frontiers of innovation, despite all red tape complexities.


According to Paul Tucker, former deputy Governor of the Bank of England and now a Harvard Professor, “innovation” also means a new European architecture, allowing more risk transfer within the monetary union: a real Capital Market Union, which would be in the interest of Eurozone most powerful country, Germany.


The closing remarks were shared by Bank of Italy Governor Ignazio Visco in his intervention on the consequences of global technological innovation for the Italian economy. Italian labour market is more and more polarized between high-skilled, technology-oriented jobs and low-skilled ones that machines can’t make. Something the whole system – from welfare to labour policies – will have to deal with.